Iced Earth

Dissorted – The Final Divide Review

Dissorted – The Final Divide Review

“What am I supposed to do if I can’t look at a band’s country of origin and judge them accordingly? What the fuck am I supposed to do as a reviewer if I can’t take one of my Sodom reviews, copy-and-paste it into the blog, and change the band name and album title? Don’t worry, dear reader. It’s no problem. I’ll, instead, steal some adjectives from Steel‘s Death Angel reviews and verbiage from AMG‘s Iced Earth ones to pen my writeup of The Final Divide. That’ll work.” Plague of plagiarism.

Paganizer – The Tower of the Morbid Review

Paganizer – The Tower of the Morbid Review

“Around twelve years ago, I procured a guitar and amp. I messed around for awhile, learning some Iced Earth riffs and some Sabaton solos, but children life got in the way, my priorities changed, and my skills regressed to nothing. Alas, I’ve still never written the power/thrash/doom masterpiece that I always imagined I would. Contrast my experience with Mr. Rogga Johansson, whose unquenchable need to make music has led to his name being credited on approximately 100 different works on Metal Archives, with three full-lengths and two EPs already released this year alone, and he’s back with the latest from his oldest active project, Paganizer.” Morbid tales of time management.

Lord – Fallen Idols Review

Lord – Fallen Idols Review

Lord is a long running Australian power metal band that originally went by the name Dungeon. They were a solid band under both monikers with some good albums, and I was a casual fan of their work. At some point after 2009 however, they completely fell off my radar, and were it not for a few of their songs surviving on my running playlists, I might have forgotten them for good.” Prodigal sons and fallen idols.

Desert – Fortune Favors the Brave Review

Desert – Fortune Favors the Brave Review

“The smoke hasn’t even cleared from the battlefield that was the recent Sabaton opus, and here we go again with another over-the-top war-themed power metal album, this time by Israel’s Desert. It takes a certain amount of moxie for a relatively unknown act to drop their third album right alongside that of their nearest comparison point. Fortune Favors the Brave indeed. Desert does have a lot in common with Sabaton as far as thematic approach and overall bombast level, but they also sound a lot like Blind Guardian and Iced Earth. That’s quite a wicked trifecta.” Get sandy.

Skelator – Cyber Metal Review

Skelator – Cyber Metal Review

“I stand before you today to confess two great sins. First, I was not allowed to watch He-man growing up, so you will not be treated to the appropriate level of jokes that this band name demands. Alas, I’m neither the writer that you want nor the one that you deserve. Secondly, despite living in the Seattle area for my entire life, I had never heard of local band Skelator until stumbling upon them in the promo bin the other day. I was far too busy with real life circumstances to take on a review for this week, but the combination of the band’s location and my physiological response to hearing the advance track required me to reprioritize my life.” Cause you had to be a He-Man, dincha?

Diviner – Realms of Time Review

Diviner – Realms of Time Review

Diviner‘s Fallen Empires debut was one of the happy little surprises of 2015, offering a burly, beefy and catchy fusion of Iced Earth and Brainstorm. It was easy to digest traditional metal with a bit of Euro-power flair – simple, straight forward and heavy enough to satisfy. Now these Greek metal warriors return with the followup, Realms of Time and it seems the band used their down time wisely. All the things they did well last time have been improved upon. The music is heavier, but even catchier, and the hooks dig deeper than before as they pull out all the stops to make a humdinger of a classic heavy metal album.” Divine right.

Stormhammer – Seven Seals Review

Stormhammer – Seven Seals Review

“There’re seven things in this world I cherish, seven people I don’t hate, and seven albums I’ll love to the grave. OK, the seven ‘things’ are only one, the seven ‘people’ are only two, and the seven albums I plan to die with are none of your fucking business. ‘Seven’ is a lucky number for dumbasses in Hollywood movies. But, for me, seven is a convenient middle-ground to questions from my boss, family, and ‘friends.’ ‘How much longer is this gonna take?!’ Seven minutes. ‘Christmas is starting! How far away are you?’ Seven days. ‘How old is Abigail?’ Seven. Wait! Nine?! Fuck. You get what I mean. Regardless of how idiotic a lucky number can be, ‘seven’ might be, indeed, a lucky number for Germany’s Stormhammer.” Lucky number Stormhammer.

Floating Worlds – Battleship Oceania Review

Floating Worlds – Battleship Oceania Review

“Power metal is one of those genres that promises a lot but has a tendency to under deliver. Progressive power — prower? — metal promises more and delivers less often still. While the key constituents, including soaring guitars, prominent keyboards, bombastic drums, and faux-operatic vocals, are all welcome, the manner in which they are stitched together is often where it comes apart. Add to this the risks inherent in making a concept album and you have quite the heady mix.” Watership down.

Paladin – Ascension Review

Paladin – Ascension Review

“In my early days of metal fandom, there was a period of roughly two years – spanning from the time I stumbled upon DragonForce,‘s Inhuman Rampage to when I began exploring Darkthrone‘s discography – where I listened to nothing except for power metal and thrash. During this period, as I worked on my sloppy renditions of “Eagle Fly Free” and “Battery” on a cheap Yamaha electric guitar my parents picked up at a department store, I had an epiphany: why the fuck hasn’t anyone mashed up the two best genres in the world?” One mash, coming up!

War Curse – Eradication Review

War Curse – Eradication Review

“Now, don’t get me wrong, being the child of the thrash era, I love when a song turns on end and a chugging lick crescendos into a neck-snapping attack. But, I also miss the days when a band could write a thrash classic that wasn’t waiting around for that mid-song savagery. War Curse also remember those good ol’ days. That’s why they gave us Eradication.” War Curse (and Pepperidge Farms remember).